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January 17, 2007

Novak Djokovic


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Second set, you were looking good. 5-2. What happened then?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I have to look on the positive things from the match. You know, I was more or less in control throughout all the match. You know, I was struggling a little bit on the 5-2. I had the set point. Afterwards I didn't serve well in that game. He used his opportunities and actually started to play well.
You know, I was really lucky because I served a breakpoint on 5-All and managed to break him at 6-5.
But I think that's the only moment, only point in the game, the whole match, when I was really -- you know, when I had the question mark on the second set.
With the first and the third set, I'm really, really satisfied with the way I played. I just hope that I will continue that way.

Q. How is your arm?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: My arm is okay. You know, I'm trying to keep it going because I have, okay, a little injury in my shoulder and biceps but nothing serious that I really cannot perform, that I cannot play, that I need to stop. Just the guys are doing a good job in the locker room, physiotherapist and masseurs, they're helping me out. So far it's going good.

Q. Your next opponent, what do you know about him?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I watched a little bit. Match with Udomchoke and Ferrero. I know Udomchoke for a couple of years back. I played doubles one tournament with him but never played against him. I actually practiced a couple of times. You know, for sure he's a good player and a tough opponent when he won against Juan Carlos Ferrero. You have to respect that.
I will go in that next match with just a goal to win. I am not familiar too much with his game, so it could be dangerous in some ways, but I just will play my game, my tennis, and try to be in a control and aggressive from the start.

Q. How much more improvement is there in your game? A lot? A little bit?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, results are showing that I improved - I can't say a lot - but I improved, that's for sure. Starting with a tournament win in Adelaide and here, two straight-set wins in a Grand Slam, I only can be positive. I'm really feeling pretty comfortable on the court and motivated; nothing to lose, really. I didn't have such a great season last year in Australia. This year, I just can win the points, win the matches and improve on the ATP list.
I really think that I improved a lot on some elements in my game, for example, serve. I'm using more opportunities, I'm more steady, more calm in the game, trying to, you know, make the opportunities, create the opportunities to go to the net. I'm trying to have more net approaches, which today I was doing pretty well. Return, I was working on the return. All of the stuff all together. I'm really satisfied with the way I'm playing right now, yeah.

Q. Were the supporters a factor today in the match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it is important fact, not just for me, I think speaking in the name of all players. Tennis is very quiet sport in that way, you know. You can't cheer between serves, points. Davis Cup is, okay, unique competition where you can explore your emotions and fans can be more louder.
I think Australian Open is really specific looking in that way because the fans, you know, not just from Serbia, from Croatia, Sweden, all countries, really the supporters are really supporting with a lot of emotions. They are really loud. It's good to see. It's good to see.
For me I know that, you know, there's been trouble with the fans, Serbian and Croatian fans, you know, the situation two days ago. But I can't affect on that. I can't do anything about it. My job is to play tennis and really give my best on the court. Looking for me, it's great, you know, because they supported me throughout all the match, first round and second round. I just hope they will be coming for my next match.

Q. Lopez said that among the young players like Gasquet or Berdych or Murray, he considers you the best. Do you think you're in the best moment of your career right now?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yes, I can say that. I'm really flattered that I hear that from a player like López or some other players because I'm pretty young still, 19 years old, coming up, have a lot of expectations behind me. But the thing is that there is a pressure on one side, but I don't feel it too much. I think that's a very important thing for me, just to be focused on my tennis.
I think the results will come. You know, there is a lot of good players around the world, top 10, top 20, all of them. The tennis is improving a lot. Everybody's working. The hits are much faster. It's tough to hold on.
Yeah, I'm really, really happy that somebody thinks I am best of the up-coming players.

Q. You don't feel any pressure?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, I don't. Well, I feel a pressure. I just say that I don't feel it too much. I think that's important thing because if I think about some things by side the tennis, by side the court, then my focus will not be a hundred percent on what I do.

Q. You're impressing him in that regard, you seem to be very sharp-minded.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, that's good to hear. I will thank him after.

Q. What exactly is the diagnosis on your shoulder and your biceps?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I have a little inflammation of tendinitis. It's just kind of problem which needs to be solved by resting. You know, I need to take off a couple of days or a week. Unfortunately, it happened in a bad time when I am in the middle of the tournaments, start of the season. But as soon as I finish with Australian Open, when I get back home, I'll take, you know, couple days off to a week, and I try to recover it.

Q. Did you have it in Adelaide?

Q. Has it happened before?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It happened -- well, it started in Umag.

Q. It was in Umag, right?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yes, it started in Umag, yes, where I retired my finals. That was one of the reasons. After that I didn't feel it for five, six months, then it just came during the preparation time for last 10 days. Like I said, in the worst time. But what can you do? I have to deal with it. For now I'm feeling okay. The guys are doing a good job, the physiotherapists and masseurs.

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